Yes, the pandemic has been sucks for cinema. A lot of big movies have been pushed off into Whatever Land as far as their release dates.
But even before this all started, there was a significant push for the smaller, artier films to find their way to streaming services rather than going all in on a theatrical release. That trend has continued over the last year with the likes of Amazon, Netflix, Apple+, and Disney putting films on streaming either exclusively or simultaneously with limited theatrical releases.
On the Rocks (playing at the now open RoadHouse Cinemas in Tucson, and currently streaming on Apple+) is one of the movies that gives you both options. You can stay home and catch it on your TV, or you can venture out and see it on a big screen. Your choice.
The film sees Bill Murray and writer/director Sofia Coppala joining forces again, their classic original teaming, Lost In Translation, being one of the more beautiful films to come out of Hollywood in the last 30 years. Murray plays Felix, the rich father of Laura, a New Yorker and author with writer’s block and a busy, almost-never-home husband, Dean (the ever-reliable Marlon Wayans in a nice dramatic turn).
The film is nicely written, and luscious looking, two common traits for most Sofia Coppola films. It also has that Murray spark, an actor who really shines with Coppola at the helm. Felix, along with Laura, suspect that Dean could be having an affair, which he disguises as work trips and meetings. The father and daughter go on a mission of discovery in more ways than one. This allows Murray to access the more devilish side of his acting persona in both funny, and scary, ways.
Exploring the imperfections of human beings when it comes to their relationships, both with our parents and our partners, Coppola’s plot twists get a little conventional and silly at times. But Murray and Jones are excellent together, and what they put up on screen will have you easily forgiving those conventionalities. There are two particular moments of reckoning scenes in this movie that are expertly handled on both sides of the camera.
So, yes, there are still some very good movies for you to see, both inside and outside of the house, during these crazy times. On the Rocks is one of them.
Now Showing at RoadHouse Cinemas and streaming on Apple+